Veronis Suhler Stevenson to buy rest of Hemscott

Hemscott, a UK financial information provider, is to be delisted from AIM and merged with US rival I-deal if a bid by US private equity firm Veronis Suhler Stevenson to take the business private is successful.

Veronis Suhler Stevenson, a US private equity firm focused on the media sector, has had a bid to acquire the remainder of Hemscott accepted by the UK financial information provider’s board of directors.
 
The 53 pence per Hemscott share offer values the business at £52.9 million (€78.5 million) and is a 27.7 percent premium to shareholders over the closing price since the offer period began on 6 February.
 
Veronis Suhler Stevenson acquired a stake in Hemscott in August 2004 and owned 73 percent of the business prior to the current offer. In November of that year, the private equity firm backed the bolt-on acquisition of bigdough, an online provider of financial information on US and European institutional fund managers, analysts and journalists.
 
If the offer is accepted by shareholders, Hemscott will cease trading on AIM, with delisting expected to take place by the end of September. The business will then be merged with I-Deal, a US provider of end-to-end workflow solutions and analytics for the global capital markets.
 
Michael Grade, BBC chairman, will step down from his position as an independent director of Hemscott after six years, as will Charles Jennings. Rosalyn Wilton, current Hemscott chief executive, will become chairman of HID Holdings, the combined Hemscott and I-Deal transatlantic data group.
 
An earlier move to take Hemscott private at 40 pence per share was rejected in January of this year by minority shareholders, including Société Générale, which has sold its 6.5 percent stake to Veronis Suhler Stevenson.
 
Veronis Suhler Stevenson previous acquisitions in Europe in 2006 include partnering with David Montgomery’s Mecom to acquire German daily newspaper Hamburger Morgenpost in January as an add-on to their joint purchase of Berliner Verlag, a German publisher, in October 2005. In April, Veronis Suhler Stevenson bought Granada Learning, an educational publisher, from UK broadcaster ITV in a £53 million deal.